Little Learners Doing “Big People” Jobs

In order for children to learn and grow to their full potential, using their imagination is imperative. Stephenville Education Foundation was able to contribute to the use of early learners’ imaginations with this recently awarded grant.

Central Elementary Teacher, Alison Sanders, applied for a grant to create a space for her littles to enhance their experience and develop critical skills for their future. She requested funds to purchase materials for the dramatic play center – a space dedicated to enhance and encourage the imagination of early learners. Items of need included role tags, signage, checklists, and informational and engaging books that prompt role play.

Because young children thrive on pretend play, the opportunities for developing creativity, imagination, and oral language skills are endless in a dramatic play center. The “imagination station” is suffused with stimuli that appeal to these pioneering students that encourage the use of their language, literacy, math, science, social studies, fine motor, gross motor and social skills. Playing dress up, pretending to cook, playing “mom and dad”, being the pretend doctor and nurse; these are some examples of what children get to do in a dramatic play center. So what to them feels like playing, is actually a strategic method for creating important connections in their brains.

The “Teachers Pay Teachers” packets and additional books and materials are for units of study in an auto/machine shop, restaurants/food service, market/grocery store, hospital/doctor office, animal clinic, post office, and airport. Known as “play to learn” activity, early learners get to be introduced and exposed to a multitude of jobs and roles involved in the community. Development of interpersonal and academic skills are beneficial for these students to adopt early on. This provides them an advantage going forward as they continue to grow.

These detailed tools and props will improve student engagement and creativity, and allow students to apply verbal, math and literacy skills in a world that they create. It is the goal of the Stephenville Education Foundation to encourage all students to work to their highest potential through an innovative curriculum. Consider getting involved and making a difference in Stephenville ISD. Large or small, every dollar matters because every student matters. Together, let’s make education take flight!

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